The Ligue Nationale de Handball (LNH), the top men’s handball league in France, is to broadcast all matches not shown by rights-holding broadcaster beIN Sports this season ahead of the probable launch of an OTT streaming service.
In addition to the matches broadcast by beIN, the LNH is to ensure the production and live streaming of 150 matches from the LNH Division 1, known as the Lidl StarLigue.
The LNH is working with French production firm Via Storia on the project.
Matches will be shown free of charge on the LNH.fr website, the LNH channel on YouTube and by the digital platforms of all 16 clubs.
The LNH said that the streaming offering has been put in place ahead of the “likely” creation before the end of the 2020-21 season of an OTT service dedicated to professional handball.
As part of its revised broadcast deal, beIN holds the rights to three matches per match week, namely those on Fridays at 8pm (CET), Saturday at 7pm and Sunday at 5pm.
In early 2019, beIN renewed its LNH rights deal in a new contract running from 2019-20 to 2022-23. Following renegotiations in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, beIN reduced its number of matches to three per match week.
The 2020-21 Lidl StarLigue season will begin on Thursday.